How To Remove Scratches From Leather Handbags

How To Remove Scratches From Leather Handbags

August 1, 2023

Jane Smith, Managing Director

Removing scratches from handbags depends on the material of the bag. It also depends on the type of scratch, different leathers require different approaches, each type of leather handbag would need to be assessed differently to effectively remove surface scratches from leather handbags.


Here are some general tips for common handbag materials:

  1. Painted Leather Handbags:
    • For minor scratches, you can often buff them out using a soft, dry cloth. Rub the scratch gently to see if it improves.
    • Leather conditioner or cream can sometimes help in reducing the appearance of scratches. Apply a small amount to the scratched area and gently rub it in with a soft cloth.
    • For deeper scratches, you may use a leather repair kit this kit works on leather handbags as well as leather shoes or take the bag to a professional leather repair service.
  1. Veg Tanned Leather Handbags:


    • A leather conditioner or antique restorer cream will help to remove scratches on natural handbags, this can be massaged in to help remove the scratches.  
    • A leather softening crème will also help to lessen the look of scratches, rub this in after cleaning to bring back softness and suppleness to the leather.
    • For deeper scratches, you may use a more intense professional approach, lightly sanding the scratch or take the bag to a professional leather repair service, to conduct a professional leather handbag repair service.


  1. Faux Leather/PVC Handbags:
    • For small scratches, try using a gentle leather cleaning solution and a soft cloth to clean the scratched area, bamboo cloths and bamboo pads are ideal for this type of approach to repairing leather handbags.
    • Faux leather repair kits or products designed for vinyl may also help in minimizing the appearance of scratches.
    • A scuff repair kit can fix these issues.
  1. Suede Handbags:


    • For minor scratches on suede, use a suede brush or suede and nubuck eraser to gently buff the scratched area in one direction. This can often restore the nap of the suede and reduce the appearance of scratches.
    • For deeper scratches, consider taking the bag to a professional suede cleaner.
  1. Metal Hardware:
    • If the scratches are on metal hardware (buckles, zippers, etc), try using a metal polish or a mixture of baking soda and water to gently buff the scratches.
    • Be careful not to damage any surrounding material while buffing the metal.
    • Note some metal work is coated with a coloured lacquer so be very careful with any type of metal polishing.


Always test any cleaning or repair method on a small, inconspicuous area of the handbag first to ensure it doesn't cause any damage or discolouration. If you're unsure about how to proceed or if the scratches on the leather handbag are too extensive, it's best to take the handbag to a professional cleaner or repair service that specialises in handbag restoration.


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